- January 12, 2021 at 1:01 am #21467
What do you like to do when restarting training after the off-season? I just spent one full month (November) just mountain biking for fun and occasional KOM chasing with no structure, then a full month of jogging, some mountain biking, weight lifting and working on mobility; active but no serious training.
Now I’ve got a race calendar plan, a new bike (Cannondale Scalpel SE, an absolute rocket ship) and I am rip-roaring ready to get back at it.
So i’m not in terrible shape but also probably not quite ready for a 20 min test and slamming intervals.
What do you recommend to do to ease back in? Do you just sort of start riding, go by RPE, increase volume and frequency? Any rough guidelines of when to know you’re ready to dive into structured training / slamming some intervals?
When I’m ready to dive back in, I’ve got your base plan and 100 miler plan lined up.
Pumped to get back at it. Thanks!
- January 12, 2021 at 5:37 pm #21472
Congrats on the sweet new bike!
The Base plan is designed to progressivly increase volume and intensity will ease you back in. The test is an important part of getting your training intensity correct. Your power levels will be lower after a season break and restarting with accurate lower power levels is an important part of easing back in and building back up to peak performance. None of the training in week 1 of the Base plan should “slam” you if you have your power levels set correctly.
- January 12, 2021 at 7:21 pm #21473
Thanks! Interested to get your views on this. I sometimes have tried free-handing a week or so of tempo, stacking as many back to back days as i can do, then backing off, then repeating, and found that gave a good boost without requiring too much recovery time, THEN start hitting the plans.
But this time i will follow your suggestion. Just pumped to get back at it.
I’ve got a local XC and endurance MTB series (25, 30 and 50 or 60 mile distances) that I hope happens this year, plus the High Cascades 100 in July. I don’t think that my training needs to change much to get a good result, but my eating definitely does.
- January 13, 2021 at 8:18 am #21484
To improve your nutrition I highly recommend the Fuel Right Race Light eBook from LW Coaching partner Apex Nutrition to improve your performance. This book is a complete nutrition plan for endurance athletes. Author, Kelli Jennings, RD teaches you to do exactly what the title claims. We all know there is no benefit to being race-light if you are bonked all the time. Kelli guides you through proper fueling for mountain bike training and events so you can achieve that trim and fit combo that feels so good.
- January 13, 2021 at 9:36 am #21485
Thanks! I’ll check it out.
The biggest issue i have is remembering to eat on the bike. Like just cruising along at the high end of z2 / low end of tempo, you can go for a while but if you do the math, calorie demands are huge. I started paying attention to it at the end of last season and realized i was ending every ride in a huge deficit. I started eating more and my performance skyrocketed and i felt SO much better the next day. But even with focused attention on it, i still find it hard to keep up. It’s almost like on some rides you need to eat at every available opportunity, which feels absurd.
- February 1, 2021 at 10:05 pm #21545
so . . . .
I ended up delaying the start of the plan, not because i didn’t want to follow your advice, but instead because there were something like five (kind of) sunny days in a row with absolute hero dirt and i could not pass it up! It’s going to rain most days until May, so this was a critical opportunity.
As a result i’ve done a lot of MTB over the past 9 days or so and a long-format FTP test to get a value (I find them more accurate than the 20 minute test and not much more taxing).
So now hte question is, Base starts today, with 20 min test scheduled for tomorrow.
Given that i just did an FTP test last week, what should i replace the test with this week? A little bit of extra endurance, maybe? Or maybe, since it’s normally a hard test, it’s basically an extra hard day already pre-budgeted, and i can go out on the MTB and slam KOMs and go as hard as i want?
- February 2, 2021 at 9:08 am #21546
Replace it with a hard day. Pick out a KOM about 20 mins in duration and go for it!
- February 3, 2021 at 12:04 pm #21552
Thank you! Always fun to get some unstructured hard riding.
The first KOM i picked, I both overcooked it and misjudged the length–it would have been way shorter than 20 mins, but rather than stopping i went harder and got a new 5 min season PB (350w); i rested a few minutes and tried a different hill, and got a season PB for 20 mins of 288w.
These are both down from season-peaks of last year but they are about 20 watts higher than where i was this time last year.
I kind of think of this as a perfect position to be in when entering base
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